From mom-and-pop outfits to big-box stores, the coronavirus pandemic has significantly impacted businesses as they navigate changing safety policies while trying to keep their doors open and pay their employees. Some businesses were forced to close their doors or downsize because of the challenges of operating under COVID-19.
But the pandemic has also brought new entries into the fold as people turned their hobbies or side hustles into small businesses.
On Monday, WTTW News reporter Joanna Hernandez moderated the latest edition of our “Chicago Tonight: Latino Voices” community conversation about COVID-19 and small Latino businesses in Chicago, discussing not only the devastation brought about by the pandemic, but the opportunities it has sparked. We also highlighted businesses that have recently opened or expanded their operations during the pandemic.
Hernandez was joined by Stephanie Villegas, owner of @_hotboxes, a charcuterie board company; Jessica Garcia, owner of Jess Cakes; Fabiola Garcia, owner of Glus, an embroidery and accessory company; Jonathan Guzman, owner of del Pueblo Barbers & Records; and Jaime di Paulo, president of the Illinois Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.